Friday, September 29, 2017

The Love and Fairness of God, Part 4 of 7 - In all His Dealings with Mankind

By John Foll, written 8/21/2017 to 9/06/2017.
© Copyright 2017 John Foll

God will reward every sinner according to the fruit of their doings:

The prophet Jeremiah gives a message from God saying, “I the LORD search the heart, I try the reins, even to give every man according to his ways, and according to the fruit of his doings.” Jeremiah 17:10 KJV. Therefore the punishment of the wicked is according to the fruit of their doings, as Jeremiah plainly states. Not all of the lost have the same level of sin or guilt; some may have been great sinners and committed great crimes against humanity, while others who were almost saved (the saddest of all), probably weren’t as bad as others. But each will get what they deserve, according to the fruit of their doings as Jeremiah says. Jeremiah furnishes us with more proof that God will not punish someone for what they don’t deserve. No one can sin so bad in this short life on earth to deserve an eternity of punishment for their sins! We know of sermons that have been preached claiming that the sinner goes on sinning eternally, since they are infuriated against God for all of their endless pain, thus their guilt can never be paid for by their death, because it gets worse and worse. What rubbish! But what kind of death would this be, if they go on suffering forever? In what way can it be referred to as death? The Bible declares that the wages of sin is death. Romans 6:23. There is no place in the Bible that promises eternal life to the wicked, it is promised only as a reward to the true believer and to the righteous. But if sinners would suffer forever, then they would never die! This contradicts the Bible’s promise that the wicked will perish. So the doctrine of eternal punishment is a contradiction of Romans 6:23 and many other places in the Bible. The way some people tell it, God will never get done with His vengeance, but this is a contradiction of the Bible. God does not retain His anger forever, as we have previously shown, because He is a merciful God! When God gets done punishing all sinners, they will all be dead forever (in all forms), this includes the Devil and his angels. Satan, the evil angels and all unrepentant sinners will be punished and will be forever destroyed, both root and branch. There will be no more sin ever after this, because all of the sinners will have forever perished, never to return again. When God does something it is complete and perfect, unlike the works of man.

You can be sure that God is more fair and just than any judge or court system in this world, and He has perfect evidence against all sinners. He cannot make a mistake, but His justice is tempered with mercy towards those who want it. Jesus said regarding the things that are hidden: “Therefore do not fear them, for there is nothing concealed that will not be revealed, or hidden that will not be known.” Matthew 10:26 NASB. And Paul says, “Therefore judge nothing before the time, until the Lord come, who both will bring to light the hidden things of darkness, and will make manifest the counsels of the hearts: and then shall every man have praise of God.” 1 Corinthians 4:5 KJV. Therefore be aware that there is nothing: no word, thought or deed that is hidden from God, it will all come out in the judgement. God gives people a choice, allowing them to decide. What they do with that choice will decide their destiny, whether they will live forever with Him in the Land of the Blessed, or perish in the Lake of Fire. There is no other alternative.

The prophet Malachi tells us what the future of the wicked is in this passage:
For, behold, the day cometh, that shall burn as an oven; and all the proud, yea, and all that do wickedly, shall be stubble: and the day that cometh shall burn them up, saith the LORD of hosts, that it shall leave them neither root nor branch. But unto you that fear my name shall the Sun of righteousness arise with healing in his wings; and ye shall go forth, and grow up as calves of the stall. And ye shall tread down the wicked; for they shall be ashes under the soles of your feet in the day that I shall do this, saith the LORD of hosts.” Malachi 4:1-3 KJV. If the wicked are forever burning, how can the saints walk on their ashes? Even if this is taken figuratively, how can the saints walk on the ashes of the wicked if they are still alive and in endless anguish? This prophecy also states that this fire shall not leave so much as the root or any branches, but they will be as stubble! The wicked will not be able to curse God or commit any further sins after their destruction, because this passage says that they will be burned up, i.e. “stubble,” signifying that there will be nothing left of them; the destruction of the wicked will be complete. Sin shall not rise up a second time. Note: This text also states ‘the day cometh, that shall burn as an oven’ and ‘the day that cometh shall burn them up’, which is similar to our earlier passage from Zephaniah 2:3 KJV: ‘the day of the LORD’s anger’. Again ‘the day cometh’ means that the day will eventually come when the wicked will burn in the ‘oven’ and be ‘stubble’. The way this is worded it implies that it would happen in a day, or in a short time frame, although this isn’t proof, otherwise this expression would not adequately describe this event. In any case, these expressions, ‘Day of the Lord’, and ‘burn’ and ‘shall be stubble’ clearly do not mean an infinite amount of time, whether the wickeds' destruction really all transpires in one day, or a slightly longer period.

(To Be Continued!)

#God #Reward #Fruit #Get #Deserve #Eternal #Suffer #Crime #Wicked #Death #Fair #Forever #Punishment #Stubble #Ashes #Sin #Day #Burn #Fire #Judge

Friday, September 22, 2017

The Love and Fairness of God, Part 3 of 7 - In all His Dealings with Mankind

By John Foll, written 8/21/2017 to 9/06/2017.
© Copyright 2017 John Foll

Will God be angry with sinners forever?

What does the Bible teach on this? In Psalms 103:9 KJV it says that God will not keep His anger forever. Regarding the future destruction that God will rain down on the earth, Jeremiah says, “I beheld the earth, and, lo, it was without form, and void; and the heavens, and they had no light. I beheld the mountains, and, lo, they trembled, and all the hills moved lightly. I beheld, and, lo, there was no man, and all the birds of the heavens were fled. I beheld, and, lo, the fruitful place was a wilderness, and all the cities thereof were broken down at the presence of the LORD, and by His fierce anger. For thus hath the LORD said, The whole land shall be desolate; yet will I not make a full end. For this shall the earth mourn, and the heavens above be black: because I have spoken it, I have purposed it, and will not repent, neither will I turn back from it.” Jeremiah 4:23-28 KJV. Here God says that the whole land (the earth) will be made desolate and there will be no man left on the face of the earth, but He will not make a full end of it. God has promised that this great destruction of the earth will take place, He will not change His mind.

This prophecy of the world being destroyed and all of the cities being broken down, takes place when Jesus returns in the clouds with great glory, and all of the wicked are slain by the brightness of His coming (or the breath of His mouth). Isaiah 11:4; 2 Thessalonians 2:8. On this day Jesus resurrects the saints and takes them back to Heaven with Him. 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18. We hope to present more on this and other last day events in future blog articles, so don’t get hung up on this.

Though God gets angry with the sinners of this earth, and brings down destruction upon it, He will not make a full end of it. This also lets us know that while God will punish sinners in the Lake of fire at the end, that He will not retain His anger forever, nor punish them forever. Jeremiah also says, “Behold, the whirlwind of the LORD goeth forth with fury, a continuing whirlwind: it shall fall with pain upon the head of the wicked. The fierce anger of the LORD shall not return, until He have done it, and until He have performed the intents of His heart: in the latter days ye shall consider it.” Jeremiah 30:23-24 KJV. When God performs His ‘fierce’ work of the destruction of the wicked by fire, it will be completed, and all of the lost sinners will have been destroyed or ‘slain’. It also says that in ‘the latter days ye shall consider it’. This is what we are doing now! We are in the latter days or the last days of this world’s history, and we are now considering that God’s fierce anger will soon rain down on the wicked, it will not burn forever, but when He performs His intent against this earth and sinners it will be completed, just as He said. He does not retain His anger forever. Another passage that teaches that God’s anger will not last forever is: “Gather yourselves together, yea, gather together, O nation not desired; before the decree bring forth, before the day pass as the chaff, before the fierce anger of the LORD come upon you, before the day of the LORD'S anger come upon you. Seek ye the LORD, all ye meek of the earth, which have wrought His judgment; seek righteousness, seek meekness: it may be ye shall be hid in the day of the LORD'S anger. Zephaniah 2:1-3 KJV. ‘The day of the LORD’s anger’ is an expression denoting a specific time and length when God will bring down His punishments. In no way can it mean that it is forever, for it is ‘the day of the LORD’s anger;’ it is at a specific time and length, not an indefinite or an infinite amount of time. This is very important to understand!

The answer to this question of whether God will be angry forever is NO! The famous sermon by Jonathan Edwards, “Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God,” given in Enfield, Connecticut July 8, 1741, is contrary to what Jeremiah, Zephaniah, and the Bible teach regarding God’s love, mercy and anger. Here is an excerpt from this sermon:

  1. It is everlasting wrath. It would be dreadful to suffer this fierceness and wrath of Almighty God one moment; but you must suffer it to all eternity. There will be no end to this exquisite horrible misery. When you look forward, you shall see a long forever, a boundless duration before you, which will swallow up your thoughts, and amaze your soul; and you will absolutely despair of ever having any deliverance, any end, any mitigation, any rest at all. You will know certainly that you must wear out long ages, millions of millions of ages, in wrestling and conflicting with this almighty merciless vengeance; and then when you have so done, when so many ages have actually been spent by you in this manner, you will know that all is but a point to what remains. So that your punishment will indeed be infinite. Oh, who can express what the state of a soul in such circumstances is! All that we can possibly say about it, gives but a very feeble, faint representation of it; it is inexpressible and inconceivable: for “who knows the power of God’s anger?”

From point 4 of this sermon.

The falsehoods told about God’s love for humanity in this part of this sermon are beyond belief! Let’s start with the title of this sermon, ‘Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God’. The main point of this title and sermon was to put a dreadful fear in the ears of the listeners and to ‘scare them into being saved.’ What horror! At the end of this quote he said, ‘for “who knows the power of God’s anger?” While God does have a fierce anger against sinners that will be displayed at the end of time at the second coming, and later at the destruction of the wicked by fire, it is tempered with love and mercy now as we have already shown. God is longsuffering and merciful, and not willing that any should perish. 2 Peter 3:9. When mercy for this world has run out, Jesus will come back in the clouds of Heaven with great power and great glory! And after the judgement completes, the wicked will all then be destroyed. God’s anger with sinners has not been displayed yet in full force! Believe me, when God’s ‘fierce anger’ is poured out on this earth, you won’t have to hear a sermon on it, or read a blog article on it, because you will know! This event in time is what much of the Bible has been warning sinners against in one way or another! The ‘Day of the Lord!’ When this happens that will be it for all unrepentant sinners! This idea that God is always angry with sinners and ready to punish or torment them, and the eternal punishment of the sinners are both dreadful errors!

Jonathan Edwards makes it seem like God is always angry with sinners, and that *all should be in dreadful fear of Him. But the Bible teaches that ‘God’s mercy endures forever!’ as we have seen. Those who spend their time thinking about how angry God is with them for their sins, will probably never give their heart to Him all the way, nor ever serve Him out of love, and thus they may be lost, unless they change! Yes, this teaching can only bring out fear and can definitely lead to being lost, if it is dwelt on and dwelt on! But the Bible declares that perfect love casts out all fear. 1 John 4:18. Those who are a Christian out of fear are just as lost as the greatest sinner in the world, unless they learn to love God. But how can they learn to love Him if they hold this dreadful belief and dwell on it? See how important the truth on this is?

* We are not saying that people who are not right with God should not be afraid of Him at all, because fear and guilt of sin are the natural result of doing wrong, and because the loss of Heaven with all of its delights, and the loss of being with their saved loved ones will be a great tragedy; it is a tremendous loss to be lost! Those who are not right with God will eventually become afraid of the Judgement and the Lord’s fierce anger. But in no way does God’s anger go on forever with the unrepentant sinner! He has mercy on all of the lost and will cause them to die once they have paid for all of their sins. And we think that this error in belief can lead to other errors, where someone may try to make it too easy to be saved and not be lost once they give their heart to the Lord or become baptized, to avoid the consequences of being lost! It’s best to learn the correct beliefs about God’s love and the truth on salvation and not be deceived about this on any point.

Jesus said you must be born again to enter the kingdom of Heaven, John 3:3, 5. Those who are in fear of God are certainly not born again, so they cannot enter the kingdom of Heaven, until they learn to love God and stop fearing Him. There is no reason to be afraid of God, if people will just confess their sins, 1 John 1:9, and believe in Jesus, John 3:16. Then they will have eternal life. When this happens fully, they will be born from above, or born again, because they will have been forgiven and living by the Spirit, which is life and peace. Romans 8:6. It is those with unconfessed sins or those who do not believe that God loves them and has forgiven them who are afraid of God. Those who love God, He is their dearest friend!

* We are not saying that people who believe in the eternal punishment of the wicked cannot be born again and are lost. But we are saying this belief system can drag someone down and cause them to doubt that God really loves them, which can make them lost. We believe that there have been many Christians who have held this belief of the eternal punishment of the wicked, who were born again Christians and will be saved. But it is much better to learn and believe the truth on this, so that your soul can be at rest and serve God out of love instead of fear, with nothing to impede your love for Him or stop you from becoming His son or daughter. 1 John 3:1.

Jonathan Edwards also made this comment in this passage of the sermon above: “this almighty merciless vengeance.” He is trying to say that God (the almighty) executes merciless vengeance on sinners. This is in direct contradiction to the many passages of God’s love and mercy in the Bible, some of which we have already cited in this article! God’s mercy is everlasting! God’s mercy endures forever! He is NEVER merciless!

Jonathan Edwards also made the comment in this sermon that “neither is God in the least bound by any promise to hold them up one moment; the devil is waiting for them, hell is gaping for them”. Apparently he has not read Revelation 20:10 of how the devil and his angels will be thrown into the lake of fire. At the final destruction of the wicked by fire, the devil and his angels will not be having a good time either; they will be in no position to be ‘gloating’ over lost humanity. Isaiah declares that Lucifer (the devil) will be ‘brought down to hell, to the side of the pit.’ Isaiah 14:10-17 KJV. The word ‘hell’ doesn’t exist in Hebrew, which Isaiah and the Old Testament were written in. This is talking about death! So Satan will be destroyed like all the other sinners too, in the lake of fire.

We mean Jonathan Edwards no disrespect but he is wrong. God will NOT retain His anger forever as the Bible declares, neither will He torture poor lost sinners in hell fire forever. Just won’t happen. Nope! However if the devil could have what he wanted, this is what we believe he would make happen. The prophet Jeremiah declares: “For the Lord will not reject forever, for if He causes grief, then He will have compassion according to His abundant lovingkindness. For He does not afflict willingly or grieve the sons of men.” Lamentations 3:31-33 NASB. This text lets us know that God’s great love and compassion would take pity on the unrepentant sinners who were being punished for their sins, and would let them die once their punishment meets their guilt. Words cannot describe the great sadness of anyone being lost! This is not a pleasant topic to think about, the final punishment and the final destruction of the wicked. We cannot give a logical reason why the sinner chooses to be lost, or why God’ loves the sinner so much, they both are a mystery. The mystery of the lost sinner is a great sadness that we cannot penetrate nor understand, but the great love of God is a mystery that we want to study for all eternity! God’s love will never grow old to the saved! Listen also to what the prophet Isaiah says here:Do not be angry beyond measure, O LORD, nor remember iniquity forever; behold, look now, all of us are Your people.” Isaiah 64:9 NASB. It seems that Isaiah is pleading with God here not to remember the iniquity of His people forever. We believe he was asking for mercy, because he knew that God was merciful, and would not remember iniquity or sin forever. How do we know this? Don’t forget our earlier promise:O give thanks unto the LORD; for He is good: for His mercy endureth for ever.” Psalm 136:1 KJV. Since it is clear that God is a merciful God, therefore He does not remember iniquity or sin forever! If God does not remember iniquity or sin forever, then there is an end to sin, and sinners will not continue in eternal punishment and sin; there will be an end to it. Do you believe the Bible’s many precious promises of God’s Love for mankind, and His perfect fairness and justice towards unrepentant sinners? Or ‘the accuser of the brethren’? Revelation 12:10.

(To Be Continued!)

#God #Not #Angry #Sinner #Forever #Belief #Destroy #Wicked #SecondComing #Eternal #Hell #Fire #Judgement #Day #Afraid #Fear #BornAgain #Mercy #Love #Torture

Friday, September 15, 2017

The Love and Fairness of God, Part 2 of 7 - In all His Dealings with Mankind

By John Foll, written 8/21/2017 to 9/06/2017.
© Copyright 2017 John Foll

Now back to our question: Is God loving, kind, fair and perfectly just towards unrepentant sinners?

What is the definition of Justice?
The root of this word is just or right. Collins Dictionary gives some of the meanings of ‘justice’ as: “Justice is fairness in the way that people are treated.” “The justice of a cause, claim, or argument is its quality of being reasonable, fair, or right.” And: “Justice is the legal system that a country uses in order to deal with people who break the law.” . And Miriam-Webster give some of the meanings of the word ‘just’ as: "acting or being in conformity with what is morally upright or good" and "being what is merited: deserved a just punishment". .

The meaning of God’s ‘righteous judgements’ is that they are all good, just, fair and true. If there could be anything wrong in the way that God administers justice towards sinners, then He would cease to be a just and righteous God. And He would lose the love of the beings that worship Him; then they would worship Him out of fear.

Would it be fair if God burned all unrepentant sinners in hell forever regardless of their crimes, and how bad they hurt God, themselves or others?
Many people teach that God will burn all the lost sinners in hell forever. Is this really true? We don’t know how anyone is able to equate our God of love with the infinite unfairness of treating all sinners with the same punishment more or less, which infinitely exceeds every sin they could ever commit in their mortal lifetime. And we don’t know how anyone could accept the idea that sinners who lived and died before newer sinners, suffer even longer than the newer ones, even if their sins were less, since they would be burning longer. Where is the justice of treating big time sinners and tyrants in the same way as lesser sinners? How could anyone accept the idea that the punishment for being lost for all sinners is punishment without end? We know from the Bible that God is love, 1 John 4:8, so this charge against God that He would do something so unfair as this cannot be true! And is it even possible that someone could sin against God or humanity so bad that they would deserve to be punished for all eternity? No, it is mathematically impossible. Do you understand how big eternity is? No human being can really comprehend eternity. It’s way too big! Its bigger than any number you can imagine; imagine a 1 with one trillion zeros. We don’t even know the name of that number, but this number is infinitely puny when compared with infinity! Now imagine a 1 with one trillion zeroes multiplied by another 1 with one trillion zeroes. What is the value of that number? Whatever number you can imagine infinity is bigger than that still. To deserve an infinite punishment the sinner in their normal mortal lifespan would have to commit the worst possible sins and infinite amount of times, which is impossible. Even if someone could live one thousand years, like some of the people almost did before the flood, and they were the most wicked human being tyrant that ever lived and intentionally committed the worst atrocities every day of this 1000 years, they could still never commit enough sins to deserve punishment for all eternity! The whole idea that God would ever do this should be ludicrous and despicable to all kind, loving and thinking beings.

We think that many people, even many Christians, as yet do not know how wonderful God is! If they truly knew this there would be such a difference in Christianity that is now largely lacking. And we think that many of the people who believe this doctrine of eternal punishment for sin have never done the math on what it would take for someone to deserve an infinite punishment. But wait a minute, the proponents of this teaching say that all lost sinners, even the least of them will suffer for all eternity. Whoa! Stop! Now we wonder who would also agree with this charge against God? Maybe the enemy of our soul? Our ancient foe! His craft and power are great and armed with cruel hate… From Dr. Martin Luther’s song: “A Mighty Fortress is our God!” Yes only a being armed with cruel hate would device such a malignant teaching about God, ascribing to God the worst attributes of himself! Is it even possible that an evil person or an evil being could come up with something more wicked than administering endless punishment throughout eternity? No way. So who are they kidding when they try to say that a God of love would do this?

God’s Fair Justice:
For the LORD knows the way of the righteous, but the way of the wicked will perish.” Psalms 1:6 NASB. In this Psalm the life of the righteous is compared with the life of the wicked. It says that the wicked will perish. Other places talk about the eternal life that God wants to give all sinners who believe in Jesus and Him, such as John 3:16. The believer is promised eternal life, but the wicked unrepentant sinner is promised that they will perish or cease to exist. Merriam-Webster gives the meaning of ‘perish’ as: ‘to become destroyed or ruined: cease to exist’, ‘deteriorate, spoil’ and ‘to cause to die’. . We believe in Psalms 1:6 and in the other places of the Bible where it describes the final punishment of the wicked, that they will be punished by fire and perish or ‘cease to exist’, which is to die the second death.  

In all of what we are explaining about God and His love for the unrepentant sinner, we are in no case saying that the lost sinner will not be punished with death by fire. Psalms 1:6, and many places in the Bible, make it clear that the sinner will perish, for God will in no wise ‘clear the guilty.’ “'The LORD is slow to anger and abundant in lovingkindness, forgiving iniquity and transgression; but He will by no means clear the guilty, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children to the third and the fourth generations.'” Numbers 14:18 NASB. See also Exodus 34:6-7 and Exodus 20:5-6.

We also have the testimony of Jesus regarding the final destruction of the wicked: “You have heard that the ancients were told, 'YOU SHALL NOT COMMIT MURDER' and 'Whoever commits murder shall be liable to the court.' But I say to you that everyone who is angry with his brother shall be guilty before the court; and whoever says to his brother, 'You good-for-nothing,' shall be guilty before the supreme court; and whoever says, 'You fool,' shall be guilty enough to go into the fiery hell. Therefore if you are presenting your offering at the altar, and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your offering there before the altar and go; first be reconciled to your brother, and then come and present your offering. Make friends quickly with your opponent at law while you are with him on the way, so that your opponent may not hand you over to the judge, and the judge to the officer, and you be thrown into prison. Truly I say to you, you will not come out of there until you have paid up the last cent.” Matthew 5:21-26 NASB. As we have stated in some of our books and blogs, there can be no higher authority than the Son of God (and of course His Father). But Jesus is the Word of God, and ALWAYS gives the same words as His Father wants Him to speak, because He and His Father are ONE. John 10:30. When Jesus speaks, there can be no debate among Christians who love and follow Him, once they learn and understand what He is telling them. (There are many honest Christians who do not know the truth of this yet because of the way they have been taught. In the times of ignorance, God winked, but is commanding men and women everywhere to repent and believe the truth once they learn it. Acts 17:30.)

Jesus declared here that anyone who calls someone else a ‘fool’ will ‘be guilty enough to go into the fiery hell.’ He also counsels all guilty sinners to make their peace with their opponent before the judgement. At the judgment, Jesus will be our opponent, if were against Him here and unrepentant, but our friend then if we confess our sins to Him and believe. John 3:16-18; 1 John 1:9. And Jesus said, "For judgment I came into this world, so that those who do not see may see, and that those who see may become blind." John 9:39 NASB. And Jesus also said, “I have come to cast fire upon the earth; and how I wish it were already kindled!” Luke 12:49 NASB. From this text we see that the fire had not been kindled on the earth when He came the first time. Many people believe that the fires of hell are ongoing, but from what Jesus said we see that this cannot be true; He hasn’t cast the fire down on the world yet. We also get from Matthew 5:21-26 that the judgement takes place before the punishment, so the fires of hell could not have been kindled yet when Jesus made that statement, since the final judgement hadn’t taken place yet. These statements go against this idea that there is an infinite burning hell that has been ever on-going…. Jesus also said, “Truly, truly, I say to you, an hour is coming and now is, when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God, and those who hear will live. For just as the Father has life in Himself, even so He gave to the Son also to have life in Himself; and He [God] gave Him authority to execute judgment, because He [Jesus] is the Son of Man. Do not marvel at this; for an hour is coming, in which all who are in the tombs will hear His voice [Jesus], and will come forth; those who did the good deeds to a resurrection of life, those who committed the evil deeds to a resurrection of judgment. I can do nothing on My own initiative. As I hear, I judge; and My judgment is just, because I do not seek My own will, but the will of Him who sent Me.” John 5:25-30 NASB. See also: 2 Corinthians 5:10; John 8:15-16; John 3:16-17; 1 John 3:8. It says here that God gave Jesus the ‘authority to execute judgement, because He is the Son of Man.’ I.e. because Jesus is God, but had been born in the flesh as a human being and could identify with us and our problems. Who better than Jesus to act as our judge?For we do not have a high priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but One who has been tempted in all things as we are, yet without sin. Therefore let us draw near with confidence to the throne of grace, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.” Hebrews 4:15-16 NASB. It can be seen through all of this that Jesus is both our judge and our advocate. Whether He is our judge or our advocate depends on whether we make Him our friend or not. Dear reader, make friends with Him quickly, while the probation of your life is still granted to you! Do not put it off!

Also note what Jesus said above, ‘those who committed the evil deeds to a resurrection of judgment.’ This clearly shows that the judgement of the wicked and their punishment cannot take place until Jesus comes back and raises the saints from the dead at His second coming, and after the judgement. Therefore it should be clear from this that no one is now in hell suffering, because the second coming of Christ hasn’t happened yet. Have you heard of massive numbers of people being raised from the dead all across the world? Have you or anyone you know seen Jesus coming in the right hand of power in the Heaven with great glory? Matthew 24:25-31; Luke 21:27; 22:69; Mathew 26:64; 25:31-46; 16:27; 1 Thessalonians 4:17. No. Therefore the judgement and the final destruction of the wicked cannot have taken place yet.

Those that fail to make friends with Jesus and His Father before the close of their life, will be judged and bear the penalty of their own sins. Jesus declares that the guilty sinners will be ‘thrown into prison’ and that they will not get out until they have ‘paid up the last cent.’ What more do you need? This ‘prison punishment’ is a clear reference to the final punishment of the wicked. Note what it says near the first part of this passage: “whoever says, ’You fool,’ shall be guilty enough to go into the fiery hell.Can there be any doubt that this passage is talking about the final judgement and the destruction of the wicked by fire? When Jesus says that they will not get out of prison until they have ‘paid up the last cent’, He is telling all who will listen, that sinners will not be punished endlessly forever, but when they have paid for their crimes against God and humanity they will utterly perish.

To punish sinners forever never entered God’s mind!

What lesson can we learn from Jeremiah regarding God’s mercy and not burning the wicked forever? "They [the children of Israel] built the high places of Baal that are in the valley of Ben-hinnom to cause their sons and their daughters to pass through the fire to Molech, which I had not commanded them nor had it entered My mind that they should do this abomination, to cause Judah to sin.” Jeremiah 32:35 NASB. See also Jeremiah 7:30-31.

God does not indiscriminately punish the wicked in the final destruction by fire without reference to their guilt. The Israelites caused their children to pass through the fire, not because their children had done anything wrong, but to “pacify” the evil pagan gods which they worshiped; they had no good reason to do this! But God does not operate this way, He is not a God of injustice! And He doesn’t need to be “pacified” either; He already loves you and will always love you regardless. After the judgement, God only casts those into the Lake of Fire who remained unrepentant during their life’s probation on this earth before the second coming, but He only punishes each sinner according to their sins and just desserts. According to Revelation 20:11-14, the final destruction of the wicked by fire takes place after the judgment completes, at the end. This is also contrary to popular belief, the fires of hell have not been kindled yet. The final phase of the judgement of the wicked must take place first before the Lake of Fire is kindled for their death. There can be no fairness of the destruction of sinners unless their judgement has been completed. It never even came into God’s mind to ask the Israelites to cause their children to pass through the fire! And it never entered His mind to punish unrepentant sinners forever either! At the day of God’s wrath, in the day of the punishment of the wicked after their final judgement, each unrepentant sinner ‘gets what they deserve’: no more and no less, since they rejected God’s love and mercy for them and didn’t repent. Therefore it is unreasonable to even suggest that God would indiscriminately punish sinners forever! Oh perish the thought!

(To Be Continued!)

#Just #God #Fair #Lost #Sinner #Unrepentant #Justice #Burn #Hell #Punishment #Eternal #Impossible #Perish #Destroy #Wicked #Fool #Guilty #Fire #Resurrection #Judgement

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

The Love and Fairness of God, Part 1 of 7 - In all His Dealings with Mankind

This is an introduction to a series on precious truth that we want to present. We want to help you love the Lord your God with all your heart, mind and soul. Matthew 22:38. We want to share with you the good news that God really loves you, even if you don’t love Him back. We want you to not be afraid of Him. There is no reason for anyone to be afraid of God, if they would allow Him to work in their life and would cooperate with Him. He will make this easy for you, if you will just let Him do it for you and find out how much He loves you! But even if someone will not let Him do this for them, there is no reason to believe that He will treat them unfairly. God is not like that. He is kind, loving and merciful, and gives people time to get to know Him and make their choice of where they want to go in life.

We think you will get much comfort and peace when you find out how much God loves you, and everyone who has ever lived or who will ever live, and how fair He is. To use common vernacular, ‘God has been given a bad rap.’ The enemy of our souls has stacked the deck against God with his falsehoods and half-truths, or so he thinks. But he can only deceive the unwary and those who want to be deceived or those whom he can blind to the truth or poison with his malignancy. Many people seek religion or seek to obey God out of guilt or fear, rather than out of true love and devotion to Him; this should not be. It’s a place to start, but all need to get beyond this in their relationship with God. He should be your dearest friend! This is what we have been striving to do, to tell all who will listen how much God loves them, so that they can fall in love with Him! Our enemy is trying to make people so disgusted with all of it that they abandon their belief in God, and some have no religion whatsoever but hedonism. And others try to make it too easy to be saved and never be lost, because they don’t like the consequences. (They preach a religion without the need of continued repentance or without the need of carrying a cross or making changes or sacrifices.) And others yet live under a burden of guilt, never knowing if they are good enough to be saved, and are worried about what lies ahead of them. And others still are just blind to the direction of their life and the consequences of their actions, and some think that they are “good enough;” that everything will be all right in the end, without making sure that they are walking in the path that God wants them to go. But never fear! Where sin abounds, God’s grace abounds even more! Romans 5:20. You don’t have to stay stuck in going the wrong direction, be misled by wrong beliefs, or stay under a deep load of guilt or fear anymore, because God has made provision for your salvation! He knows just what you need and has a plan to save you, if you will let Him. So have faith and take encouragement! If you continue to seek for the truth with a desire to please Him, He will reveal it to you and it will all make sense! Then you will have no fear of the future, because God will be your guiding light.

* If you don’t understand or follow all of the points in this article, or don’t agree, please keep praying about it, and keep reading our other articles in our other blogs, and keep reading the other articles on this subject here that we hope to publish when we can, to see more evidence and more truth, before drawing your conclusions against the merit of what we are presenting. If you keep humbling yourself before God, and keep seeking after Him with all of your heart, He will give you the Holy Spirit, who will guide you into all truth. John 16:13. Then you will know if what we are presenting here is ‘the Gospel truth’ or not.

Can you find anyone so loving, kind and fair as God? Can you find anyone else who is always just and righteous and able to deal out justice when needed? Still don’t believe this? Keep reading! God sometimes deals out part of the justice when an offender is still alive, and other times it is kept in reserve for the judgement day. He balances justice with mercy, and is patient and longsuffering with erring humanity. Take a moment to think about your God: What do you believe about Him? Do you believe that He loves you? Do you know personally that He loves you? Or are you afraid of Him? Or have you made your peace with Him? We are hoping that you will make your peace with Him and fall in love with Him, if you haven’t already, and that you will desire to serve Him, asking Him for all the help you need to be faithful to Him and the gifts you need to serve Him with. Not there yet? Hang in there, and keep praying and studying your Bible, our Love of God blog, our Faith Blog, and our books, until you are there all the way, by the grace of God. Amen.

Please keep an open mind about this topic until more articles on it are posted. This is a complex subject to deal with, because of long held beliefs by many and the bias that many have against anything but what they have been taught, and even possible Bible translation biases. It is important to do a thorough study, to gain a full understanding and understand the context of the various Bible passages that may seem contrary to the truth. It requires much careful study to get to the bottom of this and much prayer, but we will not deal with these contrary texts in this blog article. The truth will be known by all true seekers of truth, who desire the power from God to be like Him. We want to start with what is easy to understand and is clear before we proceed to deal with these other texts that appear to be against what we are presenting.

In this article you are now reading, we want to introduce you more fully to the concept of the Love of God. This has ever been our goal, for the readers of our Books on the Love of God, and blogs about His love, and on Faith, and how to please God. We want everyone to ‘get it’, and for as many people as possible to fall in love with God, and give themselves completely to Him and be filled with the Holy Spirit, and have great peace, love, joy, faith, hope and eternal happiness! If you are still convinced that  the way you have been taught is correct after reading this article, you are free to believe as you will. If you are still afraid of God after this, it’s your decision. But we hope that your soul craves the love, joy and peace that God is greatly desiring to give you and don’t take it for granted! After we have finished publishing articles on this, and the Love of God, and you still don’t believe, we will have discharged our duty to you, to tell you how much God loves you (even if you don’t love Him back). We don’t know how anyone could turn their back on such love, but we suspect that many people really don’t know how much He loves them. How could they? If they don’t know the truth about Him and believe certain falsehoods about Him, how can they know true love, peace, joy and happiness?

Is God loving, kind, fair and perfectly just towards unrepentant sinners?

Does God treat those who fail to repent unfairly? Or does God only love those who love Him back? If someone you know gets caught up in sin and fails to repent before they die, or don’t want to be saved and go to Heaven, do you believe that they will suffer forever for it?

Why do you want to be good? Why do you want to go to Heaven? Is it because you are afraid? Or is it because you long for the peace, forgiveness, love, hope and joy and a better life that God wants to give you? In this study we want you to discover the wonderful truth that you really have a choice how you live, of whether you will accept God’s offer of eternal life or not. We want you to learn the truth that God will treat everyone fairly, even if they turn their back on Him and never repent. We hope this doesn’t happen; but God is fair either way. The outcome of your life is your choice: life or death. Jesus said, “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly.” John 10:10 NASB. It’s your choice, therefore choose life. God treats all with kindness and fairness, much more than they deserve, whether they choose life or not; we will show this in this article.

While you are pondering your answer to the above questions

Consider these wonderful passages and promises showing God’s great kindness and mercy towards His created beings whom He loves:

1)  “This I recall to my mind, therefore I have hope. The LORD'S lovingkindnesses [or mercy] indeed never cease, for His compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is Your faithfulness. ‘The LORD is my portion,’ says my soul, ‘Therefore I have hope in Him.’ The LORD is good to those who wait for Him, to the person who seeks Him.” Lamentations 3:21-25 NASB.

2) “O God, You are my God; I shall seek You earnestly; my soul thirsts for You, my flesh yearns for You, in a dry and weary land where there is no water. Thus I have seen You in the sanctuary, to see Your power and Your glory. Because Your lovingkindness is better than life, my lips will praise You.” Psalm 63:1-3 NASB.

3) “O give thanks unto the LORD; for He is good: for His mercy endureth for ever.” Psalm 136:1 KJV.

4) “The LORD is compassionate and gracious, slow to anger and abounding in lovingkindness. He will not always strive with us, nor will He keep His anger forever. He has not dealt with us according to our sins, nor rewarded us according to our iniquities.” Psalms 103:8-10 NASB.

5) “Give thanks to the LORD, for He is good; for His lovingkindness is everlasting.” Psalm 118:29 NASB.

6) “Then Moses said, ‘I pray You, show me Your glory!’ And He [God] said, ‘I Myself will make all My goodness pass before you, and will proclaim the name of the LORD before you; and I will be gracious to whom I will be gracious, and will show compassion on whom I will show compassion.’” Exodus 33:18-19 NASB. The King James Version has the last part of this as “‘and [I] will be gracious to whom I will be gracious, and will shew mercy on whom I will shew mercy.’”

7) “Come now, and let us reason together,’ Says the LORD, ‘though your sins are as scarlet, they will be as white as snow; though they are red like crimson, they will be like wool.” Isaiah 1:18-20 NASB.

8) “For God so loved the world, that He gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through Him might be saved. He that believeth on Him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.” John 3:16-18 KJV.

9) “Say to them, 'As I live!' declares the Lord GOD, 'I take no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but rather that the wicked turn from his way and live. Turn back, turn back from your evil ways! Why then will you die, O house of Israel?'” Ezekiel 33:11 NASB.

10) “Give ear, O ye heavens, and I will speak; and hear, O earth, the words of my mouth. My doctrine shall drop as the rain, my speech shall distil as the dew, as the small rain upon the tender herb, and as the showers upon the grass: Because I will publish the name of the LORD: ascribe ye greatness unto our God. He is the Rock, His work is perfect: for all His ways are judgment: a God of truth and without iniquity, just and right is He.” Deuteronomy 32:1-4. KJV.

11) “And they sing the song of Moses the servant of God, and the song of the Lamb, saying, Great and marvellous are thy works, Lord God Almighty; just and true are thy ways, thou King of saints. Who shall not fear thee, O Lord, and glorify thy name? for thou only art holy: for all nations shall come and worship before thee; for thy judgments are made manifest.” Revelation 15:3-4 KJV.

(To Be Continued!) 

By John Foll, written 8/21/2017 to 9/06/2017.
© Copyright 2017 John Foll

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